Fine grained sediment clean-up in a modern urban environment
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Science
Fine grained sediment deposition in urban environments during natural hazard events can impact critical infrastructure and properties (urban terrain) leading to reduced social and economic function and potentially adverse public health effects. Therefore, clean-up of the sediments is required to minimise impacts and restore social and economic functionality as soon as possible. The strategies employed to manage and coordinate the clean-up significantly influence the speed, cost and quality of the clean-up operation. Additionally, the physical properties of the fine grained sediment affects the clean-up, transport, storage and future usage of the sediment. The goals of the research are to assess the resources, time and cost required for fine grained sediment clean-up in an urban environment following a disaster and to determine how the geotechnical properties of sediment will affect urban clean-up strategies. The thesis focuses on the impact of fine grained sediment (<1 mm) deposition from three liquefaction events during the Canterbury earthquake sequence (2010-2011) on residential suburbs and transport networks in Christchurch. It also presents how geotechnical properties of the material may affect clean-up strategies and methods by presenting geotechnical analysis of tephra material from the North Island of New Zealand. Finally, lessons for disaster response planning and decision making for clean-up of sediment in urban environments are presented. A series of semi-structured interviews of key stakeholders supported by relevant academic literature and media reports were used to record the clean-up operation coordination and management and to make a preliminary qualification of the Christchurch liquefaction ejecta clean-up (costs breakdown, time, volume, resources, coordination, planning and priorities). Further analysis of the costs and resources involved for better accuracy was required and so the analysis of Christchurch City Council road management database (RAMM) was done. In order to make a transition from general fine sediment clean-up to specific types of fine disaster sediment clean-up, adequate information about the material properties is required as they will define how the material will be handled, transported and stored. Laboratory analysis of young volcanic tephra from the New Zealand’s North Island was performed to identify their geotechnical properties (density, granulometry, plasticity, composition and angle of repose). The major findings of this research were that emergency planning and the use of the coordinated incident management system (CIMS) system during the emergency were important to facilitate rapid clean-up tasking, management of resources and ultimately recovery from widespread and voluminous liquefaction ejecta deposition in eastern Christchurch. A total estimated cost of approximately $NZ 40 million was calculated for the Christchurch City clean-up following the 2010-2011 Canterbury earthquake sequence with a partial cost of $NZ 12 million for the Southern part of the city, where up to 33% (418 km) of the road network was impacted by liquefaction ejecta and required clearing of the material following the 22 February 2011 earthquake. Over 500,000 tonnes of ejecta has been stockpiled at Burwood landfill for all three liquefaction inducing earthquake events. The average cost per kilometre for the event clean-up was $NZ 5,500/km (4 September 2010), $NZ 11,650/km (22 February 2011) and $NZ 11,185/km (13 June 2011). The duration of clean-up time of residential properties and the road network was approximately two to three months for each of the three liquefaction ejecta events; despite events volumes and spatial distribution of ejecta. Interviews and quantitative analysis of RAMM data revealed that the experience and knowledge gained from the Darfield earthquake (4 September 2010) clean-up increased the efficiency of the following Christchurch earthquake induced liquefaction ejecta clean-up events. Density, particle size, particle shape, clay content and moisture content, are the important geotechnical properties that need to be considered when planning for a clean-up method that incorporates collection, transport and disposal or storage. The geotechnical properties for the tephra samples were analysed to increase preparedness and reaction response of potentially affected North Island cities from possible product from the active volcanoes in their region. The geotechnical results from this study show that volcanic tephra could be used in road or construction material but the properties would have to be further investigated for a New Zealand context. Using fresh volcanic material in road, building or flood control construction requires good understanding of the material properties and precaution during design and construction to extra care, but if well planned, it can be economically beneficial.
Subjectspost disaster urban clean-up
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